Malawian man fined for insulting President Banda

Associated Press + More

BLANTYRE, Malawi (AP) — A court in the northern Malawi city of Mzuzu Wednesday convicts a 37-year-old man for calling President Joyce Banda "stupid" and a "failure."

Japhet Chirwa, who was arrested on Tuesday, pleaded guilty to the single charge of "conduct likely to cause breach of the peace," a misdemeanor.

Police prosecutor Kingston Mwalughali told the court that Chirwa, frustrated that the Department of Immigration had rejected his request for a new passport, threw a tantrum and blamed the government's bureaucratic red tape on the "stupidity and failure" of President Banda, the southern African country's first female president.

Mzuzu Magistrate Lillian Munthali found Chirwa guilty of the offence and fined him 15, 000 Malawi kwacha (about $44) or serve nine months in jail. Chirwa paid the fine.

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